FF programs outstide OZ

Discussion in 'Airline Frequent Flyer Programs' started by settlement, Feb 1, 2017.

  1. settlement

    settlement Junior Member

    Nov 21, 2015
    21
    0
    Hi,

    We all know about velocity and qantas. It seems the americans have better ff programs. Can australians access these programs in order to get miles for flights outside of australia, eg in europe or america?
     
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  2. JohnK

    JohnK Veteran Member

    Mar 22, 2005
    37,344
    7,407
    BNE, SYD and CNX
    Absolutely.

    Earn miles, buy miles, gift miles, spend miles, transfer miles are all possible.

    Aadvantage, MileagePlus, Alaskan Air, SkyMiles, Avianca etc. And don't discount KrisFlyer, AsiaMiles. Plenty of threads on AFF to peruse with a wealth of information.
     
  3. Moindardt

    Moindardt Active Member

    Feb 18, 2015
    631
    498
    Brisbane, Qld
    Hi Settlement. The short answer is yes. Some you might have to put a dodgy address to initially join but if you have problems, check out the forum either here or at flyer talk. Personally I am with American Airlines Aadvantage and that works well for us because they are partners with Qantas.

    Personally I would recommend you draw out what type of travel you do (including classes) and look at what has the best rewards for that. The other consideration is what do you want to achieve? Status? Award flights? Lounges? Some earn more status and less rewards and others the reverse. Look at redemption cost and availability as BA/QF/SQ have high taxes and AA/EY have low ones.
     
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  4. burmans

    burmans Senior Member

    Feb 21, 2006
    5,644
    1,630
    Sydney
    Since I discovered this forum I have points across a large number of programs, indeed I have most points in non-Australian programs as I think the value they provide is better. The main reason I still have QF/Velocity points is that FF signup deals are just so prevalent and you can't always credit to the overseas, but where I can I certainly try and maximise the points which go there rather than Qantas.
     
  5. RooFlyer

    RooFlyer Senior Member

    Nov 12, 2012
    9,743
    10,146
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    Another good feature of US (and other) ff programs is that you can occasionally buy 'miles' quite economically, and never have to actually fly the airline (or at least pay for a revenue seat). This doesn't bring status, though.

    Be aware that many US programs require you to either spend so many $$ or take so many flights per year to retain status.

    I am a member of the FF programs of: AA, Alaskan, Singapore Air, JAL, Royal Air Moroc, BA, Etihad, Avianca Brazil, LAN, Turkish, Cathay, Oman Air, Air Canada ....

    Not always to earn miles etc, sometimes just to access their award search engine, or to get a status match etc.
     


  6. settlement

    settlement Junior Member

    Nov 21, 2015
    21
    0
    Thanks guys. Does anyone know of a link or a guide to such american cards?

    Also, can these cards be sent to addressess outside of australia and america eg europe
     
  7. Buzzard

    Buzzard Established Member

    Jan 22, 2013
    4,603
    4,287
    Radelaide!
    Air Berlin is another interesting program giving benefits with both QF and VA in Australia.
    Glory days when I was Air Berlin Gold.
     
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  8. RooFlyer

    RooFlyer Senior Member

    Nov 12, 2012
    9,743
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    Just go to any of the airline web sites - pretty easy to find. But here's AAdvantage and Alaska Milage Plan

    British Airways don't allow members in Australia - use a fake address if you want that one. Most others are fine with Australian address. Many won't send a card out until you have done X miles; in the meantime they give one that can be printed out.

    There are dedicated forums on AFF for each of the major schemes. Have a read through them to learn the pros and cons of each.
     
  9. Buzzard

    Buzzard Established Member

    Jan 22, 2013
    4,603
    4,287
    Radelaide!
    A little birdie tells me there are a lot of members in Austria ;)
     
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  10. drron

    drron Enthusiast

    Jul 4, 2002
    15,185
    10,464
    Sunshine Coast
    You really need to do a lot of research yourself because we all have different flying patterns as well as what we want from a frequent flyer program.
    Initially I was with QFF and mrsdrron with Ansett-it is good to have a foot in both camps.
    Then it was just QFF.
    But we used to fly JAL before it was a member of one World and we could earn with AA on all their flights but only between Aust. and Japan on QFF.AA treated us well so AA became my primary program and QFF for mrsdrron.Even though we were on the same OS flights I got status well before mrsdrron-that is no longer the case.Also awards were easy to get.Much less available now as we want mainly F awards.When you can get them great value.

    Because of the changes in the AA program and I already have lifetime platinum status I am seriously considering switching my main loyalty to the BA club.Fortunately my sister has moved to England so I can use an English address if needed.

    So look at your flying patterns and check each program and see if that is enough to get you status.then check what you want from the program and check if the points you can earn will get you that-each program has a calculator that will tell you how much you would earn for any particular flight.
     
  11. Limewood

    Limewood Established Member

    Sep 20, 2006
    3,981
    1,162
    Cairns
    Check out AS (Alaska Airlines) can buy as many miles as you like, often have promo's on 30/50% extra miles for free, have alliances with numerous mainly OneWorld airlines, I have used them a lot. Done CNS to HKG return few times in J was around $1800 for the 60K miles about 1/3 price normally changed by CX.

    Need to know more then go here.
     
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  12. trooper

    trooper Established Member

    Apr 16, 2007
    1,321
    241
    Canberra
    Many FF programs no longer send out plastic cards anyway....
     
  13. tyrolean

    tyrolean Member

    Aug 2, 2010
    214
    59
    Between MUC, INN and NUE
    Some programs (especially oneworld) require minimum segments on the own metal. So it may be difficult to fly on those airlines.

    The big question is: Do you prefer status or award flights.
    Be aware that earning and spending is different on each program.
    The best program depends on, your flying pattern, booking classes, airlines and location.

    Some programs offer Lifetime Status, so they are quite interesting in the long run.

    My best programs.
    For Status:

    AB: Air Berlin, German Credit Card (needs German bank Account) gives status miles.
    Status benefits on Oneworld and Etihad Partners (so Virgin and Qantas).
    50K Statusmiles
    Negative: Bad financial situation.

    If you travel in premium cabins QF and BA are quite good to get a status.
    BA offers al lifetime Emerald, but no lifetime Saphire or Ruby.

    For Star Alliance:
    Turkish and Aegean are quite interesting. Aegean needs 4 Segments on their metal.
    Asiana offers quite an interesting Lifetime Status (Star Gold for 500K Miles).
     
  14. Damien00

    Damien00 Junior Member

    May 6, 2016
    48
    23
    Melbourne
    I don't fly enough to gain a real benefit from crediting flights foreign carriers programs, I'm more focused on accumulating miles in other ways to get reward flights.

    Having said that I joined US Airways Dividend Miles a couple of years ago after they moved to oneworld but before they merged with American Airlines. There was some great value to be had buying miles from them for a while and the dollar was better than it is today also which helped out.

    AA doesn't seem to offer as great value and the current exchange rate makes it a little tougher still. They have some reasonably good bonus deals at times for buying miles and the network to use them on I think is pretty decent (I did redeem an Etihad First flight MXP-AUH which was a fun experience) but its a little too expensive to just buy and stockpile miles IMO - especially with the most recent devaluation.

    Some of the positives though are very low taxes on award flights and I believe you can actually book and hold flights for a few days even if you don't have enough miles, which gives you the time to buy the miles without looking the seats.

    If there is a particular OW flight you are looking for it could be a good option to buy then redeem straight away.
     
  15. Limewood

    Limewood Established Member

    Sep 20, 2006
    3,981
    1,162
    Cairns
    Yes Damien00 you have that sussed out well, certainly my sentiments.

    AS though has given us some great CX flights in J around 1/3 cost on many occasions. Good article here on AS miles.
     
  16. Junes

    Junes Junior Member

    Sep 3, 2011
    17
    0
    This is great info, thanks to all. I'm in QFF of course, also Velocity, Virgin Atlantic, and Cathay Asia Miles. And this thread confirms traveler friends' advice to join AA Advantage. As an aside, with access to a a UK address I could join BA Exec but having recently endured the mediocrity and shabbiness of BA Business am resolved to never fly BA long-haul again. So no point. And don't even consider their PE or Economy. Ugh. Review for another thread perhaps!
     
  17. Tiki

    Tiki Member

    Jul 21, 2004
    449
    30
    BNE
    Does BA ever send anything out by snail mail? I joined a few years ago using a US address but I no longer have a valid US address and I don't want to buy one of those US Po box things. I have left the original address on the account (in California) but I don't know who currently lives there. I was worried BA might send something and the current occupant will return it as "no longer here". I like to keep some BA Avios on hand as they are good for short LATAM flights which can be expensive otherwise.

    I've used many US airline programs in the past but they are no longer as good as they used to be with devaluations, UA putting the routing restrictions and award availability down. I've been gravitating back to Aussie programs as I am finding it easier to get miles through Coles & Woolies shopping and my Amex Plt Edge.

    It all depends on your future travel plans. Our upcoming trips will be to Pacific Islands & Asia and we are ok with Y for these flights so VA, QF & SQ work well.

    AA is probably the best US program as you can currently get miles via SPG with your Aussie Amex and it's been fairly easy to get EY & QR in J class. The caveat is that AA will stop codesharing with these 2 airlines next year adn we don't know how that will affect awards. Also when SPG & Marriott fully integrate, expected in 2018, we don't know if we can still use Amex MR or if they will keep the SPG separate.
     

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